CROP DATA RETRIEVAL USING EARTH OBSERVATION DATA TO SUPPORT AGRICULTURAL WATER MANAGEMENT

ABSTRACT Accurate crop data are essential for reliable irrigation water requirements (IWR) calculations, which can be acquired during the crop growth season for a given region using earth observation (EO) satellite time series. In addition, a relationship between crop coefficients and the NDVI can be established to allow for crop evapotranspiration estimation. The main objective of the present work was to develop a methodology, and its implementation in an application software, to extract crop parameters from EO image time series for a set of parcels of different types of crops, to be used as input data for a soil water balance model to compute IWR. The methodology was tested at two distinct test sites, the Vila Franca de Xira (site I) and Vila Velha de Ródão (site II) municipalities, Portugal. Landsat-7 and −8 images acquired from April to October 2013 were used for site I, while SPOT-5 Take-5 images from April to September 2015 were considered for site II. EO data were used to estimate the basal crop coefficients, planting dates, and crops growth stage lengths. Based on crop, soil and meteorological data, the IWR for the main crops of both test regions were estimated using the IrrigRotation model. The crop coefficient curves obtained from the EO data proved to be reliable for IWR estimation.